Why does my engine burn oil?

Explanation continued in here, ICE (internal combustion engine) has been around for over a hundred years. Since the last oil embargo in the eighties governments decided to try to limit the amount of fuel being consumed by the engines. Later the EPA (environmental protection agency) started enforcing CAFE (corporate average fuel economy) to force the manufacturers to reduce the fuel consumption of the automobiles. Car manufacturers had to pay penalties so at the first opportunity the manufacturers decided to start with a clean sheet of paper immediately.

BMW N52 Engine

In the case of BMW it was 2006 with the E90 platform and N52 engine which was first time ever was designed and build with ultimate efficiency, the first of their new iteration of the efficient dynamics slogan.

Naturally the fuel economy standards kept getting more strict so they enacted accordingly which brought us to the new turbo era of the N55 and N20 engines. Let’s go back to the question why does this modern engines burn motor oil way more than the previous models decades ago?

This is all due to the maximum effort to provide fuel efficiency at the highest possible level.

How does all this work?

The N52 introduced the valvetronic system, the N55 introduced a refined version paired with twin scroll turbocharger and direct fuel injection. This all helps the ICE to operate at it’s highest efficiency level at any operating conditions. Naturally all the internal components has been reduced to the bare minimum and every component has been redesigned for minimal friction.

This is where the oil consumption comes in to the picture, by reducing the piston rings to the bare minimum, and reducing the piston ring tension to the same minimal pressure. The piston rings if just ever slightly get carboned up by infrequent oil changes or poor quality motor oil, just by topping it up cheap oil will jam the oil ring and the engine will start to consume more and more motor oil burning it up in the combustion chamber.

BMW N55 Pistons

Here are some relevant pictures of the N55 piston, as you can see the rings are extremely thin and the oil ring tension is next to nothing.

N55 also has a variable pressure oil pump to further reduce the internal load. Additionally the camshafts are hollow and the engine has been specified with a light weight motor oil to reduce the pumping losses even further. If you look closely you can see the rings are like stairs looking at them from the top down which showing the compression ring protruding out the most. The oil scraper ring in the middle is less so, and the oil ring at the bottom sticking out just barely which accounts for the least amount of ring tension.

Maintenance with The Best Lubricant

To make this jewels of engineering last some considerable time you need to give it the best possible care. Maintenance with the best lubricant you can afford and that should give you minimal oil burning and maximal peace of mind.

This is as always, a double edges sword, the clients want maximum power, the manufacturers are there to sell cars, and the government wants efficiency. It’s a difficult fight, a kind of tug of war to have your cake and eat it too, so to say.

I hope this helps, any question, how may we help? Call us for more details. Telephone: 905.795.0419

Related:

More info on, why car’s engines might burn oil.

The importance of proper oil changes

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The CV2 Citroën engine next to a BMW

The CV2 Citroën engine

The CV2 Citroën engine

There is  Citroën engine bay’s photo at above with an engine in.  There is late model BMW engine’s photo bellow, one and the two are a world apart.

The Citroën and the  BMW could not be further apart from each other. The most basic transportation in the CV2 Citroën (nick named as Duck) to a highly sophisticated computerized rocket ship from BMW.

In 1976 I started with the CV2, a little air cooled most basic car which you could fix with some farm tools.

Late model turbo N63 BMW engine

Today my world is the BMW with dual engine computers and about 60 other computers for myriad functions, sophistication and high level of automation with multiple networks.

Welcome to my world….

Any question? Contact us for details.

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Our Services. Types of services we are offering.

We can give your BMW engine more power with BMW performance air intake

You can give your BMW engine more power if you give it more what it needs.

The engine of your BMW is eager to unleash its full power, but it can only do so if you give it enough room to breath.

In other simple English words, your BMW engine needs air, as highly compressed, as steady rate as possible. That way all the cylinders will be evenly  filled, and so your BMW engine will be able to produce more power and more torque.

BMW race carBMW Race Car – Based on a 2009 BMW M3

The BMW performance air intake system ensures that every engine is always provided with the optimum of air. Special air pipes, performance air filters make possible high throughput and minimize pressure lass. This creates a throaty intake note, which can be enjoyed inside the cockpit,  enriching the sports car experience of driving your BMW.

The sound of the engine will be magnificent and the power will be unresistant.  Your BMW can take off at any moment. Which moment? You can control it with your right leg…

The section of the air intake cover is made of high tech carbon, and carries the BMW Performance lettering.

It hides under the hood, but the message it sends out could not be cleaner.

Related Topic:

BMW Tuning

Brembo Brake System

Contact us for more info: Telephone: 905.795.0419

 

 

Overheated BMW Engine

BMW heating system

BMW owners, please note your car modern Alloy engines will not tolerate severe overheat.  Due to the strength of Alloy, it will get tempered (destroyed) by overheating.

Aluminum is a light metal, with low melting point. Aluminum’s melting point  is half of the  cast Cast Iron’s meting point, which is beyond 1200 Celsius.

Older cast iron engines did tolerate overheating better.

In the event of overheating do yourself a favor and don’t try to drive your car home or to your favorite mechanic shop or you might need a new engine on arrival.

Our advice is, turn engine  off  and get a tow truck. As much as it is inconvenient, towing   is still  your best and less expensive alternative.